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Source: American Monthly Review of Reviews
Source type: magazine
Document type: editorial
Document title: “The Anarchists as a Practical Problem”
Author(s): anonymous
Date of publication: October 1901
Volume number: 24
Issue number: 4
Pagination: 389

“The Anarchists as a Practical Problem.” American Monthly Review of Reviews Oct. 1901 v24n4: p. 389.
full text
anarchism (dealing with); anarchism (laws against); presidents (protection).
Named persons
William McKinley; Theodore Roosevelt.
This editorial proceeds based on ideas expressed in the editorial immediately preceding it in the magazine. Click here to view this other editorial.


The Anarchists as a Practical Problem

Our institutions, then, are in no danger whatsoever from the anarchist movement. Assassination cannot reach or affect the Constitution of the United States. This splendid security of our institutions, moreover, is due, among other things, to that very freedom of action and speech that the anarchists so wickedly trespass against. There is a marked disposition to take some strong action against the anarchists as such. It is certainly true that they have no moral rights under our system. In logic, nothing could be more absurd than that the law should jealously preserve the life, liberty, and freedom of movement, action, and speech of the man who has avowedly dedicated his life to the destruction of all law and government. But how to make wise laws directed against the anarchist movement is a very difficult problem; and our legislatures will find that they cannot solve that problem offhand. Possibly the laws defining treason may be altered to some extent in order to make them recognize unmistakably the fact that the anarchist doctrine is essentially treasonable, and that such a deed as the one perpetrated at Buffalo is a crime against the state rather than murder in the ordinary sense. Revision of the immigration laws, with a view to the more complete exclusion of undesirable characters, may be a useful measure in its way; but it cannot, of course, be relied upon as a comprehensive remedy. After all, no direct measures taken by national or State lawmakers can accomplish very much. The best safeguard lies in our greater devotion as a nation to all the best ideals of a democratic republic. As to the personal safety of our high officers of state, and of other men conspicuous in the world of affairs, we may indeed exercise a little more care; but we cannot provide such safeguards as are thrown about a European monarch without such changes in our methods as are not feasible. Through all his life, Mr. McKinley had gone freely among the people; and so, also, has Mr. Roosevelt. Some new precautions, doubtless, can be used, but they will not involve radical changes.



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